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Patient Confidentiality Must Be Ensured-UNAIDS

NAIDS. They discourage governments from taking timely action against AIDS, and they deter individuals from finding out about their HIV status.

They also inhibit those who know they are infected from sharing their diagnosis and taking action to protect others and from seeking treatment and care for themselves, the agency said.

AIDS or HIV is the leading killer in todays world with more and more cases being reported from all over the world. In the US the government has declared June 27 as the national HIV testing day.

In conjunction with the national goal of promoting public awareness and prevention of HIV, the Department of Health in differents are encouraging all sexually active citizens to get tested for HIV.

'Getting people tested is the first step in linking infected people to appropriate care, treatment and prevention services,' said Lynda Kettinger, director of DHEC's STD/HIV Division. 'This year's theme, 'Take the Test, Take Control,' encourages people at high risk for HIV to learn their status and gain access to the most appropriate system of care if they are infected.'

The Department provides free, confidential testing across the state in local county health department locations. The test will produce results in less than a half-hour instead of the usual week or two. 'That's the 20-minute finger-stick blood test,' she said, noting that traditional intravenous needle testing will also be available at the health department.

Nationwide, the largest number of HIV/AIDS cases occurred among persons aged 35-39 years and accounted for 16% of all cases diagnosed in 2005. However, from 2001-2005, a significant increase of HIV/AIDS was seen among the 15-34 age group. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention estimates that between 252,000 and 315,000 out of more than 1.039 million HIV-positive individuals nationwide are unaware that they have HIV.

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